Kaitlin Richotte, another member of the Hawk’s Claw, (not to mention my best friend) makes a good point in her article “Cheerleaders are ATHLETES.” Being a three sport athlete, I know that sometimes hard work and dedication can be overlooked, which is very frustrating and demeaning. As a basketball player, I truly believe that the cheerleaders have a big effect on how well the team plays, and how involved the fans get. The louder and more involved the fans become, the harder the players work. Yes, cheerleaders can sometimes be a little loud and unnecessarily annoying, but without them, the gym atmosphere would be quiet and awkward.
In my opinion, cheerleading should be considered as a sport. The only thing is I would put it in a different class. For example, sports that Hopkins offers, such as soccer, basketball, and softball, are considered very active and dangerous sports. Cheerleading may be less active, but can still be just as dangerous. To me, any kind of activity that can result in a broken bone or even death is considered a sport.
I can say from first hand experience that when someone insults a sport, indirectly it insults you. People have said to me that they think softball isn’t a good sport, and that we are at the lowest end of sports offered at Hopkins. Softball may not be my favorite sport, but it does mean a lot to me. To put hours and hours of hard work and time into something, then barely have anyone give you any credit is just rude. For this reason, I support the cheerleaders undoubtedly. So, to those people out there that insult and demean the cheerleaders, I would recommend thinking twice before saying anything. Putting yourself in somebody else’ shoes can really make a big difference on how you look at things.